The Duke's Shotgun Wedding (Entangled Scandalous)(7)

By: Stacy Reid

Taking a deep breath, she said the most momentous words of her life. “Yes, I will marry you tomorrow, Your Grace.”

She didn’t dare analyze the shadow of primitive satisfaction that swept across his face.

Nor did she have time, since he quickly angled his head down, gently fitting his lips against hers, sealing their agreement.

And as she melted into his too-tempting kiss, she just hoped those words would not also prove the most calamitous of her life.

Chapter Three

Jocelyn’s capitulation had ignited a fire in Sebastian’s cock and he could still taste her on his tongue. After taking luncheon with her and conferring with his lawyer, he had used the remainder of the day to draft their marriage contract. He’d spent the night restless, wondering if she would return to Sherring Cross. This morning, he dared not analyze the feeling of pleasure and satisfaction that permeated every cell in his body when his butler announced her promptly at eight o’clock.

She was dressed in her freshly laundered riding habit with her hair pulled back in a severe bun. Sebastian thought she looked delectable.

She graciously consented to break her fast with him despite her apparent nervousness. Conversation for the following hour was very stilted, but Sebastian did not mind. He felt contented observing her and envisioning the upcoming night.

He suppressed a flare of need as he watched her eat the last morsel on her plate. She darted her tongue to capture a crumble of cake from the corner of her mouth. Her lips had a lush sexuality, and he swallowed a groan at the mental image of her tongue caressing his thick shaft. He doubted he’d ever anticipated being deep inside someone as he had her.

The emotions that stirred as he’d watched her for the past hour were not welcome. And yet, her boldness pulled him, and the mirrored need in her gaze intrigued him as she watched him covertly and with a soft hunger. He wasn’t given to fanciful notions, but if he was not careful, he could find himself steadily craving her. A state he would never welcome.

Despite her innocence, given her easy capitulation to his brother’s charms, Sebastian fully expected her to be unfaithful in marriage. Wasn’t that what women did? They couldn’t be trusted. He’d learned that the hard way from the two women he had loved and given his trust.

A savage surge of denial filled him at the thought that she might betray him to such an extent. His fingers clenched tight around his knife. He forced himself to release it, and leaned back in his chair. He would not suffer disloyalty or betrayal from her.

Her nervousness grew notably when his butler announced the vicar’s arrival. Her gaze flitted around the room, glancing everywhere but at him.

He rose and sauntered toward her, enjoying her discomfort. Next time, perhaps she would be more cautious in her demands.

“Come. The vicar awaits us in the library.” She scraped back her chair and came to her feet without waiting for him to assist her. She walked before him with short, easy strides, graceful yet determined, and the rounded curve of her backside had arousal teasing him once more. Thrusting his hands in his trouser pockets he wondered how best to deal with her. He knew full well she was only marrying him for his wealth. Not that he cared. He did not know if there had ever been a time when marriage had been about something other than money.

A sensual smile curved his lips. Though, indeed, marriage did have certain other benefits. He would ensure the lady had no time even to think of taking a lover, if that was her wont. He would keep her—and himself—well pleasured, day and night, riding her long, slow, and deep. If she then still had the withal to find a lover, he would either tip his hat to her or banish her.

She swept into the parlor and halted when she saw the two young ladies who waited. She glanced at him.

“These are Vicar Primrose’s wife and daughter, Miss Alicia and Mrs. Felicity Primrose. They are our witnesses,” he explained.

They rose to their feet, twin blond heads bobbing to greet them.

Jocelyn nodded mutely in acknowledgement, and he signaled the baffled vicar to begin.

He wondered fleetingly if he should halt the proceedings to grant her a courtship period and a wedding that befitted a duchess. Was he denying her a dream that he could easily accede to? Constance, his sister, reminded him every so often that it was an atrocity not to be married in a wedding gown fashioned by Worth from Paris. But he dismissed the notion immediately. This was a business arrangement. She wanted his money, and he wanted an heir. Dreams didn’t enter into it.

The vicar cleared his throat and asked them to face each other. Satisfaction rushed through Sebastian when she squared her shoulders, lifted her chin a notch, and met his eyes unflinchingly.

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